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Infant Care (up to 18 months old) Message Board

Infant Care (up to 18 months old) Board Index

my kids are EXACTLY two years apart too, and believe me, i know what you're going through. right down to the finding out around 4 weeks using 3-4 pregnancy tests! i worried about EVERYTHING! i even worried about if i could possibly even love the second baby because i already loved my first SO incredibly much! i cried because i had this great bond with my first, and she and i had this great friendship happening, and we had our routine, and i just didn't think there was room in my life for another kid (we hadn't planned on a second one quite so soon either!). yeah... you might say i was a psychotic hormonal mess! i was off and on like that for the whole pregnancy. i am happy to say that i am MADLY in love with both of my children and don't know what the heck i'd do without either of them!

start with pointing out babies to your child... make a big deal about them, let your child know that babies are special and wonderful. talk to her about how she is going to have a new baby coming to her house and it will be her own tiny little brother/sister that she will get to help take care of. if your kid is anything like mine, half the time she'll just look at you like you are crazy, and you'll wonder if it's really even worth it, but then the other half the time, she might really get into it and start "planning" as my kid did!

There are numerous "chores" an older sibling can do for a new baby. Bringing mommy things for the baby (diaper, wipes, tissue, burpie, etc...), singing softly to the baby to help the baby feel better (on this, my child would start belting out "twinkle twinkle little star" as loud as humanly possible, and at first i was afraid it would scare the baby, but they have developed some sort of weird bond from it and the screeching... i mean singing... actually soothed the baby!), mine even loved sorting baby's laundry! Just little things a 2 year old can do to feel involved.

as far as attention goes, start phasing out the undivided attention slowly and get your child used to playing alone a little at a time (a babygate in the bedroom door works wonderfully for this!). maybe start with 5 or 10 minutes and over time, increase the alone playtime until you have your child where you can actually function without constantly tripping over your child 24-7! my oldest will stay in her room for hours if i let her, and she'll play with all her "friends" (she is WAY into little pony at the moment!). don't feel guilty about it, either. time playing alone is a good time for a child's imagination to develop. we also met friends with kids the same age at church, and started setting up once a week playdate swaps. she loves it because she felt so big having a friend come over, and even bigger going to play at her friends house! i loved it because either way, i got a much needed break!

TOYS.... we actually just started talking about the difference between baby toys and big girl toys. by the time i was about 7 months along, she had donated most of her baby toys to the baby because the baby didn't have anything. we also talked a lot about SHARING and how even though these are the baby's toys now, baby loves her sister and would love to share toys with her. we also phased out a lot of living room toys by mentioning that babies are very slobbery and spit up a lot and maybe we should put these big girl toys in her room so they don't get messed up. AND, we talked a lot about "chokey" toys, and how they are very dangerous for baby, and made a rule that certain things stayed in her big girl room and if mommy finds them out of the room, mommy keeps them.

i decided not to bother with potty training, and giving up binkies and bottles until after i'd weaned the baby from nursing. i didn't really see the point, as in my experience, most kids will regress after a new baby invades their lives. i figured i'd give her a few months to adjust to having a new sibling first, then work on potty training and such. so she was 2 1/2 before she was potty trained, and slightly before that she gave up the binky and i can't remember when she quit the bottle, but it was around then too, i think. we also put her in a big girl bed (twin), a month before the baby was due - baby needed a place to sleep, you know! - and she ended up rolling out every night for a week, and then got the hang of it and did just fine. since she could get in and out of her bed by herself, we put a babygate in her doorway because we don't want her wandering around the house at night and us not know it - there's still a monitor in her room so we can hear her if she needs us. if you decide to do two monitors, make sure you get different brands or they won't work!

anyway, i just love giving advice, and can get quite obnoxious about it, so i'll quit now before i really get going!!! :)

OH! you asked about the stroller... we got the "joovy' sit-and-stand (think that is the name) from Babies-R-Us. I think it was in the $150 range and it's really been a lifesaver! your oldest will only outgrow the stroller if you tell her she has! it's just safer that way. for us, the rule is, she rides in the stroller by either standing or kneeling or sitting - WONDERFUL design made so the child can stand, sit, or kneel behind the baby's seat, and there are straps so that the child can sit and be strapped in - we only do that if she's not listening and staying on the stroller. we've only had to do it a few times! the only drawbacks to the joovy is that the basket to carry stuff isn't big enough to hold a diaper bag, and there is no cup holder for mommy! but there are cup holder attachments you can buy (i haven't done that yet), and i have always just hung the diaper bag on the handle - it works great that way, because it acts as a block to keep my older one in her spot! anyway, there are a lot of different brands of sit and stand strollers on the market, that's just the one i liked best. i definitely recommend sit and stand strollers over the side by side, and other models, because the sit and stand is slightly more compact and easier to manuver.

anyway, sorry for the length. it's late and i do tend to ramble shamelessly when i'm tired! :)

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